Higher Education

Munger, Tolles & Olson attorneys frequently represent higher-education institutions in a wide range of litigation matters. Our attorneys have developed an understanding of the challenges faced by both public and private colleges and universities, in both the traditional and for-profit sectors. We have guided universities through issues ranging from constitutional claims concerning admission policies to privacy issues resulting from a security breach to False Claims Act cases.

Our recent matters in this area include representing:

  • A for-profit institution against whistleblower claims under the False Claims Act related to the school’s certification of compliance with Higher Education Act requirements related to the compensation of admissions representatives.
  • A state university in its defense against claims that, following a statewide ban on affirmative action, its admissions policies violated the Equal Protection rights of African-American, Latino and Filipino applicants.
  • A state university in its defense against a claim that an oral history published by and maintained at the university’s library was defamatory.
  • A state university system in its defense against First Amendment challenges to its admission policies. Our attorneys prevailed at summary judgment on all claims and then successfully defending that judgment on appeal and in opposing United States Supreme Court review.
  • A state university in its defense against Title VI and federal and state constitutional claims brought by students alleging that the university facilitated the creation of an anti-Semitic environment on campus by failing to prohibit protests against Israel.
  • A university hospital in its defense against Confidentiality of Medical Information Act and other privacy claims related to an alleged breach of computer security.
  • A state university system in a lawsuit challenging the constitutionality of Proposition 209 and seeking to enjoin the university from enforcing it.
  • A state university in litigation regarding the planned return of skeletal remains to a Native American tribe.
  • Undocumented immigrant students and student groups, as amici curiae, in helping the University of California secure a 2010 decision of the California Supreme Court that allows undocumented graduates of California high schools to pay in-state tuition at the University of California and California State University.
Hailyn J. Chen (213) 683-9548
Bradley S. Phillips (213) 683-9262
Blanca Fromm Young (415) 512-4019